"Without Excuse" - A Message for Today's Church
February 1, 2016

C. R. Oliver

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February 1, 2016

"Without Excuse"
A Message for Today's Church

Romans 1:18-19
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.

Romans 5:8-11
Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. 11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation. NKJV

          Romans presents two different perspectives of the wrath of God. The first is the wrath of God upon those who are "without excuse" and how it pours out on an unredeemed world. The second passage is a great statement of faith, based on what Christ has done for us. God's people are not to be subjected to God's wrath.

Today, the news media play to the first quadrant, while the pulpit is virtually silent on the view of the second. This newsletter will look at both these realms and draw conclusions from them.

Note: One is obliged to read Romans 2 before reading the text of Romans 1, in order to gain perspective.

These two passages form a giant parenthesis around the subject of God's justification for administering wrath.
Romans 2:1-2
Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things.
Romans 2 joins Romans 1 in sealing the wrath of God on the activities enclosed between them.
Romans 1:20-21
So that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God
Strong's Definitions for Excuse and Inexcusable:
anapologetos (an-ap-ol-og'-ay-tos); from NT:1 (as a negative particle) and a presumed derivative of NT:626; indefensible: KJV - without an excuse, inexcuseable.

apologeomai (ap-ol-og-eh'-om-ahee); middle voice from a compound of NT:575 and NT:3056; to give an account (legal plea) of oneself, i.e. exculpate (self):
KJV - answer (for self), make defense, excuse (for self), speak for one's self.
(Biblesoft's New Exhaustive Strong's Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

Should the church excuse the Inexcusable?

          The church has been on a vast "excusing" theme for the past fifty or so years. Their excuse list grows daily as congregations practice many of the things appropriated to wrath in Romans 1&2.

Counseling chambers grind out their progeny of "understood behaviorisms," and their clients walk away exonerated in their behavior.

          Almost any excuse seems to be a good one these days. The media explore them regularly and talk shows abound with such fodder: "I was abused," "I had a dysfunctional family," "We were deprived," "Prejudice kept me from…" We all have heard their routines and the sympathetic groans from an agreeing audience.

There is an answer which is rarely summoned, it is: "Jesus bore your burdens and carried all your sorrows."

          There comes to mind the words of the Rev. T.D. Jakes in his famous sermon on these subjects, entitled, "Get Over It." He says it is time to grow up from being a coddled congregation. If one's life is impacted by these issues, it is time to drop them before the cross and reach for resurrection.

          But, an even greater issue rises before us; it is the enumerable number of Indulgences being granted by the modern church. I use this analogy for these Indulgences far exceed those granted by the Apostate Church of the Middle Ages. The Medieval ones were granted by offering large sums of money to line the priest's purses; modern ones are granted for communal approval.

          Jesse Duplantes recently told of going to a church to preach and when parsing the congregation was shocked. Forty percent raised their hands they were living with someone with whom they were not married. Later in the meeting, he said a knock came on his hotel door. When he opened it, he faced two women sent by the pastor to "minister to him." He was shocked again. He called the pastor and canceled the meeting.

          Is it any wonder fear reigns as judgment rises on the horizon? What the Bible says is "inexcusable" is almost everything condoned by the modern church and its deranged society. We are fast approaching Fischer and Hawley's premise in their 1940's volume, A few Buttons Missing, where they predicted a time would come when the sane would be tried and committed to incarceration by insane authorities. The insane would then be the approved society. One breeze through Dinesh D'Souza's current book, Stealing America, will prove Fischer and Hawley's prophetic words have now come true.

Should this indictment seem unfair and unjust, take a look at Jesus' interaction with the establishment Temple-ites during His earthly ministry. Look into the following passage and marvel how the huge red rubberstamp that reads, "Inexcusable," was glaringly applied.

John 15:18-27
"If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. 20 Remember the word that I said to you, 'A servant is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. 21 But all these things they will do to you for My name's sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 He who hates Me hates My Father also. 24 If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father. 25 But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, 'They hated Me without a cause.'"
The same orthodox Jewish authorities that condemned Jesus to death were the same ordaining board that empowered an honor graduate from their greatest school of Theology to go and murder and persecute the followers of Jesus. That may be the reason why Romans is so unrelenting.

As Jesus' ministry unfolded through Galilee, He increasingly condemned the "inexcusable."

Jesus' condemnation of Korazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum is a perfect example:
Matthew 11:20-24
20 Then Jesus began to denounce the cities in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. 21 "Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? No, you will go down to the depths. If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. 24 But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you."
It is these verses which caused Leonard Ravenhill to pen the book, Sodom had no Bible. His premise was simple: Sodom had no point of reference, no book of the Law. Their sin was heinous and every sponsor of that sin today stands under the same penalty as Capernaum, "Inexcusable."

The Temple-ites had the Torah and the Prophets and the wisdom of ancient Rabbis. Korazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum had synagogues and they had the Law. The previous four hundred years had come and gone since the last Prophet. This gave them ample time to modify truth and compromise the Word. They were the result of four hundred years of establishing what was "right in their own eyes." Jesus came and raised the "standard;" they tore at its base.

Where is the church today? Ask Jesse!
Where is the church today? Ask Jesus!

Let the standard be raised again! Let it be heralded in pulpit and pew until the altars are full and tears replace showmanship!

"Condemned by what they condone," the clergy stands "Inexcusable." Listen to the sad entonements of, "this verse really does not mean what you've been taught" or "we believe in a progressive word."

It is easier to preach "Every body's OK" than "Hey, let us go no further with this fiasco."

Thou art Inexcusable O Roman Church with your Vaticanized debauchery and millenniums of "compromise and corruption." It is time to dismantle your polarized polish and tear away the façade of veneration. A trail of impenitence for inquisitions, burnings and death is Inexcusable, regardless of who declares the Reformation to be at end! Give that reasoning to those cited in Foxes Book of Martyrs or see if it covers the trail of bloodshed by the hands of the Jesuits.

Oh, it's also time to dissemble the Assembly and reform their regimes!

Those churches birthed from the Reformation need to reform themselves, for their lack of standing by Bible truth is "Inexcusable." More than the need to return to Orthodoxy is a need to return to the mourners bench.

Let there be a return to the mind of Christ, whose mind clearly condemned the behavior of the most orthodox clergy and constituency in the world's history. Who could stand immune today?

I can hear some now begin to whine, "What is he talking about? This doesn't describe me."
Such was the verbatim whine proffered to the prophet Malachi.
Malachi 3:7-8
You have gone away from My ordinances
And have not kept them.
Return to Me, and I will return to you,"
Says the LORD of hosts.
"But you said,
'In what way shall we return?'

8 "Will a man rob God?
Yet you have robbed Me!
But you say,
'In what way have we robbed You?'
Hear now the "born again Jew" and graduate from Gamaliel's honor class. Does he hand Indulgences to the ungodly and unrighteous?
Romans 1:18-32
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, 21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man - and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, 25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, 30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; 32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
Note, kindly, these verses describe "inexcusable behavior." The huge rubber stamp, "NO EXCUSE," is stamped across its survey. Yet, think of how descriptive of congregations this has become. Yes, media parade most of these sins and glorify most of the them by awarding honors and publicly adoring their profligacy. Society hurries to decry "bigotry," "radicalism," "prejudice," "social incorrectness" or "homophobia" when they encounter opposition.

The last part of Paul's message sums such matters rather succinctly. "Those who practice such things are deserving of death along with those who approve of those who practice them." How hard is this to understand?

The wrath of God is coming upon those found in the "inexcusable" camp. I am not sure John Q Public understands the full import of what that kind of "Wrath" really involves. Sodom got an isolated version of it. And it left an imprint on their psyche they would never forget, as the reminder of it lingers to this day.

Read Ezekiel's account of that kind of wrath. What Ezekiel chronicled was the wrath of God against the most orthodox of Levites, who worshipped other things and other gods. Ezekiel was shocked by what he saw, as he labored in the camp of the captives. He could hardly fathom what he saw in the vision and realized that what he suffered was the result of the spiritual decisions of those most trusted with truth. "Begin at the House of God" was the command from the Supreme Commander.
Ezek 8:17-10:2
17 And He said to me, "Have you seen this, O son of man? Is it a trivial thing to the house of Judah to commit the abominations which they commit here? For they have filled the land with violence; then they have returned to provoke Me to anger. Indeed they put the branch to their nose. 18 Therefore I also will act in fury. My eye will not spare nor will I have pity; and though they cry in My ears with a loud voice, I will not hear them."

Ezekiel 9:1
Then He called out in my hearing with a loud voice, saying, "Let those who have charge over the city draw near, each with a deadly weapon in his hand." 2 And suddenly six men came from the direction of the upper gate, which faces north, each with his battle-ax in his hand. One man among them was clothed with linen and had a writer's inkhorn at his side. They went in and stood beside the bronze altar.

3 Now the glory of the God of Israel had gone up from the cherub, where it had been, to the threshold of the temple. And He called to the man clothed with linen, who had the writer's inkhorn at his side; 4 and the LORD said to him, "Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it."

5 To the others He said in my hearing, "Go after him through the city and kill; do not let your eye spare, nor have any pity. 6 Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary." So they began with the elders who were before the temple. 7 Then He said to them, "Defile the temple, and fill the courts with the slain. Go out!" And they went out and killed in the city.

8 So it was, that while they were killing them, I was left alone; and I fell on my face and cried out, and said, "Ah, Lord GOD! Will You destroy all the remnant of Israel in pouring out Your fury on Jerusalem?"

9 Then He said to me, "The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great, and the land is full of bloodshed, and the city full of perversity; for they say, 'The LORD has forsaken the land, and the LORD does not see!' 10 And as for Me also, My eye will neither spare, nor will I have pity, but I will recompense their deeds on their own head."

11 Just then, the man clothed with linen, who had the inkhorn at his side, reported back and said, "I have done as You commanded me."

Ezekiel 10:1
And I looked, and there in the firmament that was above the head of the cherubim, there appeared something like a sapphire stone, having the appearance of the likeness of a throne.
Ezekiel witnessed the wrath of God and the eventual lifting of the Glory of God from Israel's main place of worship. O' the question of today is "Has the glory gone from us and is the wrath about to take place?"

The wrath of God is much stronger than atomic plundering and deeper than the strongest of current warnings.

Remember, the wrath of God fell at Elijah's hand, while standing at the altar before the prophets of Baal. Fire fell and the command to slay every clergyman on the premises was carried out definitively.

The wrath of God soaked the earth and every living creature on it, as sin rose and tinged the nostrils of the Most High. Noah witnessed the resulting "wrath of God."

The Lord does not need to employ thermo-nuclear war, Isis invasion or the threats of nations for tools. His arsenal of "Wrath" is extremely capable of "taking care of business" and He gets the glory.

We need to remind ourselves that He who wrote, "The rulers of nations are brought to nothing" is the same one who wrote the scripture cited above.

There is no "wiggle room" with these passages. Our "babified society" relishes bringing excuses to the table and seeing the teachers of Progressivism look at their parental authentication and accept them at face value, in spite of their ridiculous motives. Millenniums I am addressing you. On the Day of Judgment, thundering down the halls of God's justice will be heard, "Inexcusable." There, it won't matter how much societal approval one has garnered. Hollywood, I'm talking to you. Church, I'm talking to you!
Romans 2:1
Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. 2 But we know that the judgment of God is according to truth against those who practice such THINGS.
When King Saul answered the Prophet Samuel's inquiry about sheep blatting and lives spared, he was able to show that being King made no difference-his actions were "without excuse." The same indictment occurred when Samuel wanted to know who carried out sacrifice in his absence. Saul's answer was, "Well, we didn't think you were coming and the delay was interfering with my plans-so, I subbed for you."

Upon Saul came the big ugly rubber stamp! INEXCUSABLE!

When Nathan stood eyeball to eyeball with King David and declared, "Thou art the man," there came that big ugly stamp.

As the prophet Samson lay in the lap of Delilah's charms, there came that big ugly stamp.

The lion, which towered over the slain prophet who "altered God's plan to fit the hour," witnessed that big ugly stamp.

Peter heard the cock crow and there came that big ugly stamp.

Ananias and Sapphira stood with the wide eyes of relative truth and there came that big ugly stamp.

Look around church, can you see it coming-that big ugly stamp is poised above pulpit and pew!

It doesn't have to be this way.

The great revivals on this fledgling continent, coupled with the formative years of national identity, carried by the fierce messages of men like Jonathan Edwards (The punishment of the Wicked, unavoidable and inescapable), laid a foundation that has been eroded.

The reward for their faithfulness should be greater than is presented as "Christian," today. Two great awakenings, along with the more modern revivals under Finney and Sunday and Graham, bathed this nation with spiritual opportunity that should have sustained its State, but alas, now the State stands "Without Excuse."

With a new church raised up on every corner and television and media crowded with preachments, one would think this to be enough to draw a national return to faith and spiritual triumph. Yet, resistance grows toward Christ and His work…Behold the huge rubber stamp!

Churches and Seminaries, who teach half doctrines, stand "Without Excuse." Take a look at Atlanta, Georgia's huge National Baptist Seminary and bring up the discussion on Liberation Theology and see what occurs. Communism and radical liberalism is written in stone in their sacred halls; they stand, "Without excuse."

A government with its three pronged system, based on a Godly Constitution should have been enough: Now stands Congress, the judicial system and a president, who are, "Without excuse!"

Cinematic dogs carrying filth and debauchery into every seam of the modern home stand "Without excuse," regardless of whom they celebrate, honor or pay tribute.

"Condemned by what we condone" can be written across businesses and Wall Street, as well as Cathedrals and central governments, for they are without excuse. Inquire of the retail establishments you use, "What organizations do you fund and how much," and see what is the answer. It will surprise you what you support through your patronage.
Romans 2:5-11
5 But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, 6 who "will render to each one according to his deeds": 7 eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; 8 but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness - indignation and wrath, 9 tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek; 10 but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 11 For there is no partiality with God.
Saints and the Wrath of God:
Saints are never to experience the wrath of God. Wrath is not appointed to us. Pulpits have been silent about this truth. Yet, whom we call "saints" may not measure up to the term, Holiness Ones, either.

Biblical sainthood is not defined by councils and tribunes, it's demarcation is the product of Holy living.
Romans 5:8-10
8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.
The church needs to tell a world that they need to be "Saved from the wrath to come!" That is the evangelical note for 2016, for there is not a soul alive who has not personally confronted the possibility of being present at the time of wrath.

The church needs to hear the clear message of Paul.
Ephesians 5:3-7
3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them.
Yes, that is the perfect sermon topic for this next week, "Do not be partakers with them." "Let no man deceive you with empty words." Who stands brave enough to preach this kind of message?

Paul is explicit in his message. He is addressing the church, which again needs addressing. Are there those in your "friend" field or family that are described below?
1 Corinthians 5:9-13
I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. 10 Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner - not even to eat with such a person.

12 For what have I to do with judging those also who are outside? Do you not judge those who are inside? 13 But those who are outside God judges. Therefore "put away from yourselves the evil person."
I heard one sister say, "If I quoted those passages, my family wouldn't have anything to do with me. They already think I am 'off.'" A brother said, "I tried that and all hell broke loose, and I was ostracized for several years. No, it's better just to be a silent witness."

Dare we distance ourselves from those of Ezra's time? When the Law was read, they tore their clothes and even went the distance to separate themselves from family, wives and children. They were willing to do anything necessary to cleanse themselves and be a holy people. How far are we willing to go today?
1 Corinthians 5:7-8
Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. 8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
The changeless God did not give Paul a "word of irrelevance" for today. Neither did Malachi voice senseless words for an ancient people.
Malachi 3:1-6
"Behold, I send My messenger, And he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, Will suddenly come to His temple, Even the Messenger of the covenant, In whom you delight. Behold, He is coming, "Says the LORD of hosts. 2 "But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner's fire And like launderers' soap. 3 He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, And purge them as gold and silver, That they may offer to the LORD An offering in righteousness.
4 "Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem Will be pleasant to the LORD, As in the days of old, As in former years. 5 And I will come near you for judgment; I will be a swift witness Against sorcerers, Against adulterers, Against perjurers, Against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans, And against those who turn away an alien Because they do not fear Me, "Says the LORD of hosts.
6 "For I am the LORD, I do not change; Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob."
Jesus took the wrath of God against sin and bore it upon the cross. He was crucified to save His Church from the wrath to come, but it must be a church "without spot or blemish." Salvation is many things to us, as it brings a person into right relationship to God and offers the receiver an intercessor as High Priest. Our spiritual eyes and ears become open to revelation and relationship, as redemptive grace takes us to higher dimensions. We are allowed to know the mind of Christ and relish understanding the viewpoint of heaven. But, we are also redeemed from the wrath to come and not to be identified as those "saved, yet so as through fire."
1 Corinthians 3:11-17
11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one's work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is. 14 If anyone's work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.

16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.
If this was the message of a thousand pulpits, preached with the passion of Paul, there would be such a falling away of unbelievable proportion that Monday would be declared a "Day of Astonishment." But, there would be such a shout from heaven that would make an earthquake mild in comparison. Those who remained would know the forgiving, cleansing power of the gospel message burned fresh within them.

          Spurgeon was correct: "On the wings of decline come the seeds of revival."

Read Revelation14:9-13; 20:4-6.

Until Next month,

Dr. Cosby R. Oliver, PhD.


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